Thoughts On: GSA "The Phoenix Exhibition"

Last year when news broke that The Mackintosh Building was on fire the shock seemed to deeply affect anyone and everyone who has even the vaguest passing interest in Art and Design or with the city of Glasgow and it's heritage to the core.

I had never actually been into the Mackintosh Building myself as having grown up on the West Coast of Scotland (30-odd miles South of Glasgow) the name and designs of Charles Rennie Mackintosh were so prevalent in my youth, to the point of over-saturation, that I couldn't appreciate the man or his work for many years. It wasn't, in fact, until around four years ago when visiting the Kelvingrove Art Museum (which has a sizeable collection devoted to Mackintosh) that I slowly began to grasp why he is loved by so many people. But the library he designed was, at that point still, something I simply took for granted as part of the heritage and history of design and creativity in my home country. I had never honestly given the building a great deal of thought until suddenly it was potentially no longer going to be there any more. 

Here is a BBC News article from 2014 for a little bit of context and background on the fire

Restoration work is now under way and The Guardian recently published a good article in their design blog about it:

Today though I am writing not about the loss of the library building but of the work that the loss catalysed. Work produced by the people most affected by the fire, the fourth year students of Glasgow School of Art who lost their degree show pieces. Those pieces of work which ostensibly were what they had been working towards their whole lives up to that point. The Phoenix Bursary was born out of the ashes of fire and loss and this exhibition is the culmination of the six months that the students either spent together in a purpose built studio in Glasgow called The Whiskey Bond or in far flung reaches of the globe in host institutions.

Delve in deeper to the story via The Phoenix Bursary's own blogspot here:

For the short and uninitiated, here follows nine of my favourite works from The Phoenix Bursary Exhibition which ran from the 25th July to the 2nd of August 2015.

The work which follows is not my own and copyright remains with the artists.

Frank McElhinney

Freya Stockford

Gillian Sharpe

Matthew Bainbridge

 Hannah Blackwell

Pricilia Kheng

 Special Mention - I couldn't work out who this piece was by - but it's great!

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